Wednesday, March 16, 2011

SOUTHERN LIGHTS by Danielle Steele

Publisher: Dell/Bantam
Date published: October 26th, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-440-24332-8
Contemporary Romantic Suspense
Mass Market Paperback
Reviewed by Dawn
Obtained by Publisher

Alexa Hamilton left the South behind after her ex-husband left her and their daughter for his first wife and his family was extremely cruel to her. Now an up-and-coming district attorney in Manhattan, she is preparing for her biggest case yet. When her seventeen year old daughter begins to receive mysterious and threatening letters, Alexa thinks they are from serial killer, Luke Quentin, the defendant of her big trial. Now Alexa has to ask the one man she doesn’t trust to keep her daughter safe while she deals with memories of a betrayal that haunts her still.

After many years away from reading a Danielle Steele novel, I picked up SOUTHERN LIGHTS hoping this time it would be different than the other books I read by her. In a way, it was good and other ways so repetitive I wanted to toss the book aside and scream “Come on already”. The writing was at times tight then it unraveled to the point where I was scratching my head wondering what happened to that plotline that seemed to disappear in mid-chapter. The characters were boring, the story flipped too frequently to too many sub-plots that it felt like I would need a score card to figure everything out. The pace of the story was quite uneven.

SOUTHERN LIGHTS introduces the reader to tough and cynical Alexa Hamilton. Ten years before, she was dealt a major blow when her husband left her for his first wife and his family enjoyed tearing her apart in the aftermath of her marriage breaking up. Taking her young daughter, she makes a life in Manhattan as a District Attorney, where a plumb legal case lands in her lap. Alexa is a strong heroine who I felt should have been the star of this story. I enjoyed her scenes with her daughter yet the trial scenes felt a little forced in the end.

The secondary characters where a mix of interesting yet second dimensional. I often felt like they were there for space and to keep the story moving along. The story had some really interesting characters that I wished were a bit more fleshed out as it would have made the storyline stronger.

SOUTHERN LIGHTS is a story about families dealing with the past and more in trademark Danielle Steele-style. I was not impressed by this latest novel by a seasoned author like Danielle Steele and found SOUTHERN LIGHTS to be a boring story with so many plot points going on; it was kind of hard to follow along. If you are looking for a quick read, then this may be for you.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

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